Blue Sky Solar Racing Team

University of Toronto Blue Sky Solar Racing Team

 

University of Toronto’s Blue Sky Solar Racing team required a power supply that could deliver adequate power to test their solar vehicle’s wind sensor, brake and signal lights, rear-view camera, and various circuit boards. They ultimately chose B&K Precision’s 1671 power supplies to perform this core functionality. It provided the necessary current and output terminals for the majority of their tests.

"A wind sensor is used for strategic purposes," a team member explained. Attached to the outside of the vehicle, when following another solar car it can obtain the data of both speed and direction of the wind, useful information to a driver for adjusting their driving method.

Other important functions of the solar car that needed to be tested included a rear-view camera to enable the driver to see behind them, and brake and signal lights made up of LEDs that had to be adjusted. “The power supply enables us to determine the optimal voltage and brightness for each set of serial connected LEDs,” said a team member. They were also able to determine how the sets should be connected – in series, parallel, or both.

 

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Testing the peak power tracker (PCBs)

Furthermore, many of their circuit designs are initially tested on breadboards, which require a voltage source to power them. These circuit designs are then moved to printed circuit boards where programmed microchips are used and must also be powered for testing.

By using power supplies, the Blue Sky Solar Racing team was able to test all their solar car devices and validate their circuit designs.

 

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Testing the communication system (PCBs)
Foundations

The Blue Sky Solar Racing team consists of students from the University of Toronto, ranging from the engineering disciplines to the social sciences, humanities, and commerce. As representatives of the 13th-ranked university in the world for engineering and technology, our mission is not only to deliver a premier car that sets the stage for sustainable transportation, but also educating the public about renewable fuel alternatives and staying true of the team philosophy of global environmental consciousness that embodies all of humanity.